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Tamara Noel Fitzgerald, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Surgery
Assistant Research Professor of Global Health

My academic interest is global pediatric surgery.  There are millions of children worldwide who do not have access to safe surgery for congenital anomalies and acquired conditions.  As a result, many children in low-middle income countries live with chronic disability or die before they can access surgical care.  In many cultures, congenital problems may also lead to social isolation or catastrophic health expenditure for families.

Many countries in sub-Saharan Africa have just a handful of qualified surgeons.  For example, in Uganda, the country where I have most frequently worked, there are 4 general pediatric surgeons for a country of 39 million people.  This would be the equivalent of 32 pediatric surgeons serving the entire United States.  There are neighboring countries with no pediatric surgeons.

My work focuses on surgical capacity building - empowering and working with local surgeons in low-middle income countries to increase numbers of surgical providers, improve quality and increase surgical support services such as intensive care and anesthesia services.  I have several ongoing projects regarding the burden of surgical disease for patients and their families in low-middle income countries, surgical training and capacity building.

Education and Training

  • Pediatric Surgery Fellow, Pediatric Surgery, Yale University School of Medicine, 2011 - 2013
  • General Surgery Resident, Surgery, Yale University School of Medicine, 2004 - 2011
  • Ph.D., Boston University, 2004
  • M.D., Boston University School of Medicine, 2004
  • B.S., Boston University, 1997

Publications

Reed, Christopher R., Sarah J. Commander, John Sekabira, Phyllis Kisa, Nasser Kakembo, Anne Wesonga, Monica Langer, Gustavo A. Villanova, Doruk Ozgediz, and Tamara N. Fitzgerald. “Comparison of Ugandan and North American Pediatric Surgery Fellows' Operative Experience: Opportunities for Global Training Exchange.” J Surg Educ 77, no. 3 (May 2020): 606–14. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsurg.2019.12.001.

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Kakembo, Nasser, David F. Grabski, Tamara N. Fitzgerald, Arlene Muzira, Maija Cheung, Phyllis Kisa, John Sekabira, and Doruk Ozgediz. “Burden of Surgical Infections in a Tertiary-Care Pediatric Surgery Service in Uganda.” Surg Infect (Larchmt) 21, no. 2 (March 2020): 130–35. https://doi.org/10.1089/sur.2019.045.

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Ullrich, Sarah J., Nasser Kakembo, David F. Grabski, Maija Cheung, Phyllis Kisa, Mary Nabukenya, Janat Tumukunde, et al. “Burden and Outcomes of Neonatal Surgery in Uganda: Results of a Five-Year Prospective Study.” J Surg Res 246 (February 2020): 93–99. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jss.2019.08.015.

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Scheiner, A., J. L. Rickard, B. Nwomeh, R. S. Jawa, E. Ginzburg, T. N. Fitzgerald, A. Charles, and A. Bekele. “Global Surgery Pro–Con Debate: A Pathway to Bilateral Academic Success or the Bold New Face of Colonialism?” Journal of Surgical Research, January 1, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jss.2020.01.032.

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Global Initiative for Children’s Surgery, Warren D. “Global Initiative for Children's Surgery: A Model of Global Collaboration to Advance the Surgical Care of Children.” World J Surg 43, no. 6 (June 2019): 1416–25. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00268-018-04887-8.

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Reed, Christopher R., Hannah Williamson, Cory Vatsaas, Reed Kamyszek, Harold J. Leraas, Candice Ray, James Otto, Tamara Fitzgerald, Suresh Agarwal, and Elisabeth T. Tracy. “Higher mortality in pediatric and adult trauma patients with traumatic coagulopathy, using age-adjusted diagnostic criteria.” Surgery 165, no. 6 (June 2019): 1108–15. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.surg.2019.03.003.

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Kisa, Phyllis, David F. Grabski, Doruk Ozgediz, Margaret Ajiko, Raffaele Aspide, Robert Baird, Gillian Barker, et al. “Unifying Children's Surgery and Anesthesia Stakeholders Across Institutions and Clinical Disciplines: Challenges and Solutions from Uganda.” World J Surg 43, no. 6 (June 2019): 1435–49. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00268-018-04905-9.

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Ezekian, Brian, Harold J. Leraas, Brian R. Englum, Brian F. Gilmore, Christopher Reed, Tamara N. Fitzgerald, Henry E. Rice, and Elisabeth T. Tracy. “Outcomes of laparoscopic resection of Meckel's diverticulum are equivalent to open laparotomy.” J Pediatr Surg 54, no. 3 (March 2019): 507–10. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2018.03.010.

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